NEW YORK (AP) — Fifty-eight floors above Manhattan, President Donald Trump watched his legacy change and his political future grow more uncertain.
The president, back in his hometown of New York for the U.N. General Assembly, was taking “executive time” at his Trump Tower penthouse late Tuesday afternoon when Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that the House was launching a formal impeachment inquiry against him. Pelosi’s move increases the odds that Trump will become the third U.S. president to be impeached.
It was a step more than 2½ years in the making and one that moves the president farther down the path of self-styled political martyrdom.
The product of Trump’s norm-breaking presidency and Democrats’ lingering anger over the outcome of the 2016 election, the impeachment inquiry has largely been welcomed by the Republican president’s advisers, who believe it could backfire against Democrats. The president himself said the move could help his electoral chances, but he reacted in the moment with a cascade of angry tweets that accused Democrats of engaging in “a witch hunt” and “presidential harassment.”